Each year, around the first week of November, as the leaves begin to change color and temperatures tend to dip, thousands of people descend on Yukon’s park system to help spiff it up.
And most of those people are associated with Southwest Covenant Schools and the Patriot Project.
This year’s Patriot Project is set for Friday.
Jennifer Filippone, the coordinator for this year’s project, said 1,000 volunteers are expected to participate.
The volunteers include every student at Southwest Covenant, a private school, as well as many of their parents and the school’s staff.
City workers also participate.
Filippone said this year’s project will involve the three-park complex that includes Chisholm Trail, Freedom Trail and City Park.
A group of students also will work at Taylor Park, which is where the school’s undefeated football team plays.
This year, they will renovate the football field press box, along with doing work at the city’s BMX facility and the remote-control car race track.
The event is a fundraiser for the school, which operates on tuition and donations.
Through Monday, the effort had raised $191,700.
That already is above last year’s total of $191,000, and Filippone said she expects that number to grow.
Ten percent of what is raised will be donated to the House of Healing, which is a local charity that helps teenage girls.
Filippone said this is the 13th year for the Patriot Project.
“We want to serve our community and bless the area where we live. We want to serve the area,” she said.
At the three-park complex, the volunteers will do things such as repainting the tennis court near the Yukon Community Center, paint curbs, clean out planting beds and tying ribbons on the guy-wires around the Christmas decorations.
Because of the Patriot Project, officials with the city of Yukon have announced that the parks will be closed to the public until 4 p.m.
Jenna Roberson, a spokesperson for the city, said closing the parks is necessary for the safety of the children and the volunteers.